“Even though we caught the police in these lies, they still won’t drop these bogus charges and now he [Ford Jr.] faces 20 years along with his permanent disability,” Crump said.
“It’s the new South,” said Ford Sr. of Pittsburgh of how police treat African-American citizens. “They’re very racist.”
Crump made sure to note that Ford Jr. was held by the police on the routine traffic stop for over 24 minutes, despite the teen’s willingness to cooperate. Ford Jr. was subject to racist language and other mistreatment during his ordeal, says Crump. The attorney also blasted the police for what he says are false claims of a simultaneous malfunction of their collar microphones during the stop, preventing the recording of evidence which could have allowed the Ford family to prove their case.
“To add insult to injury, after they shot him, they put him face down in the road and handcuffed him,” said Crump. Even more harrowing, Ford Jr.’s parents were blocked from seeing their son for over seven days.
Crump, who rose to notoriety after working alongside the families of slain teens Trayvon Martin and Kendrick Johnson, took on this case and added that because Ford Jr. is alive to tell his side, justice may finally be served. However, the case has taken quite a toll on the Ford family.
“It’s been hard. Every time I look at my son, I still shed tears, “said Ford Sr. in closing, angered that the cops are still on the force. “He was just afraid, he was afraid for his life.”
A petition to drop the standing charges against Leon Ford Jr. has been established. To learn more, click here.